Every evening either the Prime Minister or one of his senior cabinet hold a press conference, with a senior scientists or Public Health England experts either side of them. Sir Patrick Vallance is the Government Chief Scientific Adviser is a regular attendee, as are Professor Chris Whitty, the Chief Medical Officer (CMO) for England, Jennifer Margaret Harries OBE, the Deputy Chief Medical Officer and Professor Stephen Powis, the medical director for NHS England.
These knowledgeable individuals along with many other Professor’s, Doctors, psychologists and other scientists form part of The Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) which provides scientific and technical advice to the Prime Minister and government decision makers during emergencies.
These are the people that politicians are referring to when they talk about ‘Following the scientific advice.’
Without doubt we have some of the best Scientific minds in the world and a review of the qualifications and experience of the four named SAGE members makes for impressive reading.
I however have some concerns.
Sir Patrick Vallance the Chief Scientific Adviser sounds more like a politician than a scientist and I fear that he is not speaking out when the Government go against the SAGE scientific advice.
Once the level of personal protective equipment (PPE) became so low as to be virtually non-existence Public Health England guidelines were downgraded and NHS staff were told to reuse existing PPE.
This was totally at odds to the ‘World Health Organisation’ instructions regarding PPE
Who made this decision and where is the scientific evidence to support this decision?
The number of NHS doctors, nurses and other front-line staff who have lost their lives is staggering and I ask why?
Why haven’t our NHS doctors, nurses and other front-line staff got effective PPE?
Sir Patrick Vallance was interviewed by SKY News presenter Stephen Dixon on the 13th March 2020 and said the about 60% of people would need to become infected for the UK to enjoy ‘Herd Immunity’.
Sir Patrick Vallance repeated his comments about ‘Herd Immunity’ during one of the early press conferences and nobody from Government challenged his comments. They were happy to go along ‘Following the scientific advice.’
Thank goodness for the Imperial College London who presented a detailed report showing that the ‘Herd Immunity’ would overwhelm our hospitals.
With the greatest respect to Sir Patrick Vallance why didn’t he know the information that the Imperial College London released and if he did know it then why the hell did he suggest ‘Herd Immunity’ as an option?
Advise V Orders
On the 16th March 2020 Boris Johnson advised people to avoid pubs, clubs, theatres and work from home if possible and avoid “non-essential” travel.
Yet just a few days later on the 20 March 2020 Boris Johnson changed his ‘advice’ to ‘orders’.
Who was advising Boris Johnson and what changed between the 16th March 2020 to the 20th March 2020?
More people died – that is what happened!
In March 2020 Sir Patrick Vallance said on national TV
“If we can get numbers down to 20,000 and below, that’s a good outcome in terms of where we would hope to get to with this outbreak.”
The UK’s coronavirus death toll has now passed 20,000 and is increasing daily.
We have gone well past what might have been a (good outcome), and the number of deaths keeps going up!
The subject of whether members of the public should wear face masks on public transport, in shops or other public places is discussed daily and up until the 1st May 2020 the Government have failed to give any advice either way.
Sky Political reporter Alan McGuinness published an excellent article with the header
Coronavirus: No 10 admits face coverings have ‘weak but positive effect’ in slowing COVID-19
Are we to believe that it took the SAGE scientists 4 months to come up with this conclusion or was the information held back because of a National shortage of face masks along with other PPE?
Publish the scientific advice and inform the people of the UK – We need to know!